Applied Human Services
Bachelor of Science Degree (B.S.)
The Applied Human Services baccalaureate is designed to prepare women and men for careers in a variety of human services fields: services for persons with developmental disabilities or mental illness, services for individuals who have been adjudicated in the criminal justice system, services for individuals and families in crisis, services for older individuals, and services for individuals with a chemical dependency. The major provides students with a solid grounding in the general theories and principles of assessing human needs and responding to those needs in the least restrictive environment. Upon this generalist foundation, students may build a curriculum that emphasizes human service theory and practice targeted for specific populations or may emphasize the administration of human services, as opposed to direct care. Students will complete a general core of math, science, humanities, computer science and communications. This liberal arts core and the human services specialization reflect a recognition that strong written and oral communication skills are critical to ethical human service practice and successful tenure in the field, that practical experience is equally as important as theoretical knowledge to serve others competently, and that an understanding of how technology can assist human service recipients often equips providers with useful and marketable tools.
About the curriculum
View the classes you will be attending in the College Catalog.
Accreditation & Industry Connections
List of jobs via the College Catalog.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics median annual wage for social and human service assistants was $28,850 in May 2012. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $19,430, and the top 10 percent earned more than $46,080.
Industries with the highest published employment and wages for this occupation are:
|Industry||Employment||Hourly mean wage||Annual mean wage|
|Individual and Family Services||87,560||$14.34||$29,820|
|Residential Intellectual and Developmental Disability, Mental Health, and Substance Abuse Facilities||43,450||$12.48||$25,950|
|Local Government (OES Designation)||38,110||$17.15||$35,680|
|State Government (OES Designation)||34,200||$17.71||$36,840|
|Vocational Rehabilitation Services||25,430||$12.93||$26,880|
*Statistics reported in May 2012
The "field" is a term used to both reference work in a specific human service organization and to describe the dynamic interaction of factors and people that come together in the delivery of human services. For the human services students at Penn College, a field experience is a supervised placement, outside of the Program and typically off campus, in a human service agency, wherein the students have the opportunity to observe and to participate in agency operations, client-staff interactions and interagency/agency-community networks. This experience in the field enables students to integrate their perceptions, beliefs and academic understanding with the experience of functioning as an adjunct to the community service agency that serves as the field placement site. Field placement is consistent with the College values statement:
- Hands-on Education: We believe the best preparation for a successful career is a learning environment emphasizing applied, real-world instruction. We provide experiential learning in small classes and labs with state of the art equipment, mentored by skilled faculty with business and industry experience.
- Student-Centered Environment: Our students' best interest is the priority influencing our decision making. As an open enrollment college, believing in the dignity and worth of every individual, we strive to provide a holistic experience that fosters educational, physical, personal, and social development.
- Business and Industry Partnerships: As an entrepreneurial institution, we develop cooperative relationships with business and industry to ensure our curriculum remains current, encourages lifelong learning, and prepares our graduates to compete successfully in the global marketplace. This provides opportunities for faculty to enhance their skills, students to acquire work-based experiences, the College to receive technology and scholarship support, and the community to benefit from a highly qualified workforce.
- Community of Respect: Each member of the Penn College community is entitled to and expected to contribute to a collegial and mutually supportive environment. As stewards of this campus environment, we promote collaboration and communication, cultivate an appreciation of our differences, and treat each other with respect.
Field placement challenges human services students to:
- blend theory with practice,
- expand their awareness of human diversity and complexity,
- monitor their own behavior, attitudes and beliefs,
- contribute to the effort to help others,
- develop professional skills,
- interact with professional helpers, human services clients, community stakeholders, fellow students and faculty.
View general transfer procedures via the College Catalog.
Clubs & Activities
- Human Services Club
Human Services Advisory Committee
Advisory committees, which act as recommending bodies to the faculty and administration, consist of in-field professionals who act as partners in the development of curriculum. Their curricular and equipment advice as well as their industry connections and internship opportunities are invaluable to our students and to the growth of our institution.